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Subsea Sand Management – Path B: Treatment (Particles or Flow Path) (B-FSM-178)

The Treatment Approach seeks to modify either the sand particles or the flow path to reduce or eliminate the deleterious effects of sand on subsea equipment.

Modify Particle Morphology

  • Change particle to smoother shape to reduce erosion rate – remove or smoothen sharp edges

Modify Particle Size

  • Reduce particle size below critical level where erosion is minimal

Particle Coating

  • Coat particle to smoothen out sharp edges or modify density – both to reduce or minimize erosion rate

Partial/Full Chemical Dissolution

  • Dissolve whole or parts of particle to remove sharp edges or reduce size below critical level – both to reduce or minimize erosion rate

Migrate particles to center of pipe flow

  • Keep particles from impacting pipe or components

An interesting example is shown in the figure below. Solid particles below a critical threshold size have a negligible effect on pipe component erosion. This threshold size is 100 microns for sand in water and 20 microns for sand in erosion. You don’t need to remove the particles below this threshold size.


  1. Rawlins, C.H. and Ditria, J.C., 2019. “The Subsea Sand Management Challenge – What to do with the Sand?”. Offshore Technology Conference, Houston, TX, 6-9 May, OTC-29278-MS. https://doi.org/10.4043/29278-MS
  2. Rawlins, C.H. 2019. “Enhanced Production Through Surface Facilities Sand Management.” SPE Distinguished Lecturer presentation. Link here
  3. eprocess-training.com

Next week I will continue discussion on the three category paths.

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